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Yet another way Chinese and Western culture differ… August 26, 2009

Posted by Jill (@bonnjill) in Random musings.

I read an article last night online in the LA Times called Beijing loves IKEA – but not for shopping that had me shaking my head. When I worked at Borders we used to complain about all the people who would carry piles of books and/or magazines into the Café to read and then not buy them and leave them piled on the tables, sometimes with coffee spills. I would absolutely hate to work at the Beijing IKEA. According to the article, “Customers hop into display beds and nap, pose for snapshots with the decor and enjoy the air conditioning and free soda refills. They just don’t buy much.” I’ve been to IKEA in Germany and here in the U.S. and can honestly say I have never seen a single person napping on any of the display furniture at IKEA. Shopping yes, sitting on and testing yes, napping no. Maybe I should drive to Pittsburgh and take a nap in the bed and see how that would fly here. 🙂



1. Corinne McKay - August 27, 2009

Oh my gosh, that article is *hilarious*, I love the photo of the people asleep on the sofa! I’ve never been to China but when I was in Singapore, it amazed me how many people went to shopping malls for entertainment. But I guess that the novelty of it being 90+ degrees and 90+ percent humidity year-round wears off after a while 🙂

2. Andrew Rink - September 4, 2009

Quite a bit of exaggeration in that article IMHO. I’ve been to the Beijing Yi Jia store on a number of occasions and never noticed anybody sleeping in the beds or on the couches. I wouldn’t rule it out but it’s not the norm. And there are queues at the tills — not large ones by Chinese standards, but it’s not like there’s nobody buying anything. Also, in Beijing there are cheaper places to eat than IKEA, although probably not if you’re looking for Swedish meatballs with chips (fries) and lingonberry sauce :).

jillsommer - September 4, 2009

Thanks for setting the record straight, Andrew. My cousin is in Chengdu with the State Department, but I hadn’t had a chance to ask him how accurate it was. And who doesn’t like eating Swedish meatballs and lingonberry sauce. Think I’ll go make some right now… (yes, I have a bag in my freezer – how is that for a coincidence?) I love IKEA :-).

3. GuexBosewes - September 21, 2009

I don’t know If I said it already but …Hey good stuff…keep up the good work! 🙂 I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks,)

A definite great read..


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